Son of Doctor Esker’s Notebook by Plankton Games

Review – Son of Doctor Esker’s Notebook by Plankton Games
Website Link
Price – $14.99


Son of Esker is Plankton Games’ standalone sequel to Doctor Esker’s Notebook.  LIke the original, players will be given a deck of cards full of mystery.  They must complete a series of puzzles to reach the end of this devious chain.

Once opened the deck will be divided into ten smaller decks which share the same card backs, and an eleventh solution deck.  Each mini-deck creates a puzzle to be solved.  Players who correctly crack the puzzle will be rewarded with a number.  If the final answer is right, players will be able to combine the cards from the solution deck to discover which mini-deck to tackle next.  This pattern will continue until they’ve completed all ten puzzle decks.

Son of Esker is marketed for 1+ players, ages 13+.  It is said to take between 1-3 hours.  As a duo, we took around two and a half hours to complete the entire game.


Puzzles: 4/5 Stars

If you’re looking for some challenging puzzles, Son of Esker is a good place to start.  With ten puzzles there is a good chance you’ll find something that really puts your brain to the test.  Personally, we found quite a few difficult, in the sense that the puzzles were doable, we just really had to think about them.

From spatial to logical to mathematical to musical to other types of thinking, Son of Esker’s puzzles are ready to test different types of minds.  Since the only real information players are given for each puzzle is contained on the cards, clues are often given in a very minimal and visual way.  It will take some deducing of what each piece of information is supposed to mean, but when it comes together it’ll be hard not to applaud the puzzle work and design.

The game does come with a QR code to a progressive hint system for those who might need it.

From a purely puzzle point-of-view, Son of Esker is well put together and provides a lot of variety.  Just try not to feel too bad if you feel stumped at times.  When we hit the music-reading based puzzle, we definitely need some hints.

Narrative: 1/5 Stars

Truthfully, Son of Esker is not a game about narrative.  There is a quick blurb on the back of the box, but it doesn’t actually tie into the puzzles or the game itself.  Even the completion of the game doesn’t come with any narrative.  Son of Esker is a chain of puzzles.  It’s best to go in knowing there is no story and this is truly just a chance to test yourself with puzzles. 

Overall Fun: 3.5/5 Stars

We liked what Son of Esker had to offer.  It provides a decent amount of puzzling and a good challenge in a smaller bundle and for a smaller price tag.  The higher challenge may make this less enjoyable for some, but we personally didn’t mind feeling stupid at points and we could appreciate the puzzles once things became clearer.      

Who Should Play:

Son of Esker is probably best for those who love challenging puzzles and don’t care about immersion or story.  We recommend this game for those who aren’t afraid of high difficulty levels and who want to take on a variety of unique puzzles that test different ways of thinking.  This is also a good game for those who want a game that can be played in smaller chunks (10-20 minute play sessions per puzzle). 


Narrative: 1/5 Stars

Puzzles: 4/5 Stars

Overall Fun: 3.5/5 Stars


Recommended: Yes

Disclaimer: we purchased the game with our own money, this review is not sponsored. All thoughts are our own.

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